How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

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How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Apr 29, 2018 1:11 am

I know this has been asked repeatedly, but it's a question that is case by case. Here is my case.

I am a current second year in a major market who will begin clerking in a flyover in the fall.

My current firm is v-10, but likely won't invite me back, hence my question: how difficult will it be to get a firm job? 3.5ish @ MVPB

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Sun Apr 29, 2018 7:06 am

Does your summer firm give cold offers or straight-up no offer? At least one of the firms I interviewed with asked whether I'd received offers to return from my summer firm. It'd be good to at least plausibly be able to say you got an offer but want to go someplace else for [reasons, like practice groups or location].

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby nixy » Sun Apr 29, 2018 11:01 am

I don't get how an offer from the OP's summer firm is relevant when they've already been working full time for 2 years?

OP, many many people do switch firms while clerking, and if you have the qualifications for a V10 coming out of law school, you should be able to find something for after your clerkship, although personally I'm not knowledgable enough about biglaw to say what your odds are at what kind of firm. I can just say that switching like this is very very common. (I don't think the question of whether your current firm will have you back will come up in the same way that whether you got an offer comes up for hiring while you're still in school, but I could be wrong on that.)

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:28 pm

Here is my piece of anecdotal evidence: Went to a T4 on East Coast; finished top ~5%; landed big law V100 at satellite office in smaller market on West Coast (had ties); tried for clerkship targeting only the city I was (and still am) working in for 2 cycles; landed fed dist court second go around while I was a third year associate; currently clerking, began networking in the fall and doing screeners/informational interviews throughout the year; got a callback with my #1 choice (V50) and accepted their offer last week without having to interview with any other big shops. (I did do a callback with a lit boutique as well.)

I wouldn’t call it “easy” in that you don’t need to try, but if you play your cards right and interview well you’ll have more opportunities available to you. I wouldn’t have even gotten a look without the clerkship based on my credentials.

BlackAndOrange84

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby BlackAndOrange84 » Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:36 pm

nixy wrote:I don't get how an offer from the OP's summer firm is relevant when they've already been working full time for 2 years?

OP, many many people do switch firms while clerking, and if you have the qualifications for a V10 coming out of law school, you should be able to find something for after your clerkship, although personally I'm not knowledgable enough about biglaw to say what your odds are at what kind of firm. I can just say that switching like this is very very common. (I don't think the question of whether your current firm will have you back will come up in the same way that whether you got an offer comes up for hiring while you're still in school, but I could be wrong on that.)


Oh yeah, I missed that entirely. Woops.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Apr 29, 2018 5:37 pm

You can go back to a firm comparable to the one you came from. There’s a bit of a myth that clerking for any federal court m suddenly opens up a new class of firm that wasn’t available before. With the exception of some lit boutiques, that isn’t really true; the firms that you couldn’t get at OCI will usually be the same sorts of firms you won’t get post-clerkship (not exactly, but roughly—there are always rule-proving exceptions), unless you got lucky in your clerkship search or very unlucky at OCI.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Apr 29, 2018 10:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I know this has been asked repeatedly, but it's a question that is case by case. Here is my case.

I am a current second year in a major market who will begin clerking in a flyover in the fall.

My current firm is v-10, but likely won't invite me back, hence my question: how difficult will it be to get a firm job? 3.5ish @ MVPB


I don't understand this and would appreciate information if others do: why wouldn't the current firm invite you back? Wouldn't they view your getting the clerkship experience as a plus? And even if they didn't, if you've been working there for a while now and have gotten to know people, can't you make sure to stay on good terms with them, so that you'll have an easier time going back to them rather than interviewing with them cold once the clerkship ends?

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 30, 2018 10:39 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I know this has been asked repeatedly, but it's a question that is case by case. Here is my case.

I am a current second year in a major market who will begin clerking in a flyover in the fall.

My current firm is v-10, but likely won't invite me back, hence my question: how difficult will it be to get a firm job? 3.5ish @ MVPB


I don't understand this and would appreciate information if others do: why wouldn't the current firm invite you back? Wouldn't they view your getting the clerkship experience as a plus? And even if they didn't, if you've been working there for a while now and have gotten to know people, can't you make sure to stay on good terms with them, so that you'll have an easier time going back to them rather than interviewing with them cold once the clerkship ends?


I think its a confluence of factors. There are firms that don't hire clerks and don't hire laterals unless there is a extreme need to do so. Those firms aren't in the lateral/clerk market, so they are already in that mindset when thinking about bringing someone back. Firms lose people to attrition at every class year, and they plan for this, and clerking is just another form of built-in attrition. The fact that someone was at a firm with this thought process helps with any case to come back, but it doesn't make up for the fact that, if you clerk in your 2/3/4 year, you are missing out on a year of development at the firm, and sort of lose your momentum. I think the higher the prestige of the clerkship, the more likely a firm like this pushes to bring the person back. I think that if there is a good working relationship with the firm, there is likely an opportunity to go back, but it's not a given. On the other hand, many firms are very happy to hire clerks (their own associates or away from other firms). It's just two schools of thought.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 01, 2018 12:17 am

OP here:

Thanks for the insights!

Relatedly, what are my odds for BigFed? I am in a west coast major market.

Thanks!

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 01, 2018 8:13 am

Will depend entirely on what part of Big Fed, what your area of practice is, who has openings, etc. etc. Like your qualifications on paper are perfectly fine in the abstract, but it will depend what kind of applicable experience you can bring to an agency, what kind of work you've done that shows dedication to their mission, etc.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 03, 2018 12:22 am

OP:

Criminal AUSA. No previous ties or WCC work.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Thu May 03, 2018 8:21 am

Offices do hire criminal AUSAs with biglaw experience coming out of clerkships. It is very very office specific as to what experience they want from you. Generally speaking, I think more than 2 years practice experience will be required, but again, it depends and I know people who have been hired with your credentials, but not in major offices. Ties/connections to an office will be very helpful. Also having trial/courtroom experience, to the extent you can get that in biglaw.

I think you might have a better shot at biglaw, just because there are a lot more law firms out there and plenty who like to hire clerks, and you will have some experience already so coming in as a 4th year wouldn't be crazy (though I'm guessing a little about that). There just aren't that many AUSA openings at a given time and gazillions apply, so it's hard to predict for anyone.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 07, 2018 3:13 pm

MVP / 3.4 / 2 years of biglaw pre-clerkship.

I only applied to V50 and got 3 screeners (V10, V20, and V40). Only got one offer from the three and accepted it. It's not easy but it is manageable. Luck is a big part and so is timing. It is not for sure.

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Re: How hard to get biglaw post clerkship

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 07, 2018 5:07 pm

I left as a third year and did semi flyover dct and coa clerkships. Applied broadly to firms and ausa positions. Got 5+ callbacks at each and multiple offers at each. But it could have gone the other way, for sure. And my old firm decided not to offer me it seems, solely based on need not on my relationship with them which was/is great.



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